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THE FLOWER. Once in a golden hour
I cast to earth a seed. Up there came a flower,
The people said, a weed.
IN THE VALLEY OF
CAUTERETZ. All along the valley, stream that flashest
white, Deepening thy voice with the deepening
of the night, All along the valley, where thy waters flow, I walk'd with one I loved two and thirty
years ago. All along the valley, while I walk'd to-day, The two and thirty years were a mist that
rolls away; For all along the valley, down thy rocky
bed, Thy living voice to me was as the voice
of the dead, And all along the valley, by rock and
cave and tree, The voice of the dead was a living voice
To and fro they went
Thro' my garden-bower, And muttering discontent
Cursed me and my flower.
Then it grew so tall
It wore a crown of light, But thieves from o'er the wall
Stole the seed by night.
Sow'd it far and wide
By every town and tower, Till all the people cried,
'Splendid is the flower.'.
Fair is her cottage in its place,
Dream in the sliding tides.
And fairer she, but ah how soon to die ! Her quiet dream of life this hour may
cease. Her peaceful being slowly passes by
To some more perfect peace.
THE SAILOR BOY.
He rose at dawn and, fired with hope,
Shot o'er the seething harbour-bar, And reach'd the ship and caught the rope,
And whistled to the morning star.
•Whither, O whither, love, shall we go, For a score of sweet little summers or so ?' The sweet little wife of the singer said, On the day that follow'd the day she was
wed, * Whither, O whither, love, shall we go?' And the singer shaking his curly head Turn'd as he sat, and struck the keys There at his right with a sudden crash, Singing, 'And shall it be over the seas With a crew that is neither rude nor rash, But a bevy of Eroses apple-cheek’d, In a shallop of crystal ivory-beak’d, With a satin sail of a ruby glow, To a sweet little Eden on earth that I
know, A mountain islet pointed and peak’d; Waves on a diamond shingle dash, Cataract brooks to the ocean run, Fairily-delicate palaces shine Mixt with myrtle and clad with vine, And overstream'd and silvery-streak'd With many a rivulet high against the Sun The facets of the glorious mountain flash Above the valleys of palm and pine.'
And while he whistled long and loud
He heard a fierce mermaiden cry,
• The sands and yeasty surges mix
In caves about the dreary bay, And on thy ribs the limpet sticks,
And in thy heart the scrawl shall play.'
* Thither, O thither, love, let us go.'
*Fool,' he answer'd, death is sure
To those that stay and those that roam, But I will nevermore endure
To sit with empty hands at home.
No, no, no ! For in all that exquisite isle, my dear,
A PLAGUE upon the people fell,
A famine after laid them low, Then thorpe and byre arose in fire,
For on them brake the sudden foe; So thick they died the people cried,
The Gods are moved against the land.'
Help us from famine
Greater than 1—is that your cry?
And men will live to see it. Well--if it be so—so it is, you know ;
And if it be so, so be it.